Subaru is recalling nearly 50,000 Legacy, Outback and Impreza models produced from 2010 to 2013 because of the risk that the vehicles might start on their own. The “zombie recall” is affecting Subaru models that contain an automatic transmission and an Audiovox remote engine starter, according to the carmaker.
"If the [remote engine starter] is dropped, the fob may malfunction and randomly transmit an engine start request without pressing the button," according to the recall letter from Subaru of America, addressed to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
The Japanese automaker is not taking the matter lightly as it details what exactly could happen if and when the car takes on a life of its own.
"The engine may inadvertently start and run for up to 15 minutes," the letter said. "The engine may continue to start and stop until the fob battery is depleted, or until the vehicle runs out of fuel. If the vehicle is parked in an enclosed area, there is a risk of carbon monoxide build-up which may cause asphyxiation."
Subaru said that the recall begins at the end of April, when owners can get their “zombie” cars repaired by dealers, free of charge.
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The company recently recalled nearly 634,000 cars and SUVs in the U.S. in January because of a potential fire risk.